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August 2012 (1)

Family visit and food parcels

Written by Antje on August 7th 2019 21:10

Last week my sister and her husband and their children came to visit me. It was an opportunity for them to see a part of my work here. My sister and niece were willing to dress like Bangladesh ladies. I gave them a tour of the hospital. My sister even watched an operation. In a nearby village we visited a ‘safe delivery unit’ and a group for young people. One of the purposes of this group is to discourage young people from marrying too young. We also visited one of our nursing assistants at her home.

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We made a trip to Saidpur, a nearby town, to do some shopping. Because of the rain season, we had a heavy rain shower.

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After a train trip to Dhaka we spent the afternoon at the Dutch Club—and even went swimming!! The second day we visited the old city with its river port. Here all the ferries from the southern part of the land come in. I enjoyed having the family for a whole week. It was good to renew and strengthen our bonds together.

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Bangladesh is now in its rainy season. That does have some advantages—for instance the rice fields are under water and do not need to be irrigated to plant the rice and the days that it rains it is cooler. Unfortunately this also means that the rivers have more water. The large rivers come from Nepal via India and collect quite a bit of water along the way.

In our work area there are communities living in “char” areas. This is a sandbank along the river which doesn’t flood every year. People live and grow crops here. This year parts of those “char” areas were flooded. I took this picture last week when I returned from Dhaka. In the middle the Jamuna river and around it is the land.

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People in this flooded area lost all their food supplies and food parcels were made and distributed. A food parcel consists of 10 kg rice, 1 kg lentils, a liter oil and a kilo of salt. Last Friday a group of volunteers filled sacks with food parcels. They attempted to make 1960 food parcels. That is a lot of rice!! 

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It is very satisfying to be able to do this, but my hands are not used to his type of work. I had several blisters on my fingers!